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program 2023

Exterior Day (Esterno giorno)

Director Biography – Giulia Magno
Giulia Magno is an Italian filmmaker, art historian and curator based in Rome. Her films have been presented internationally, including at the ICA Miami, the National Galleries of Scotland, and the National Museum of Cinema. She has collaborated with institutions such as the ICA London and the MAXXI Museum in Rome to curate exhibitions exploring the intersection of film and contemporary art.
SYNOPSIS
Inspired by a famous exchange of letters between Michelangelo Antonioni and Mark Rothko, “Esterno giorno” is an experimental love letter to Italian cinema. Embarking on a journey in the footsteps of the characters played by Monica Vitti, the filmmaker poetically intertwines contemporary footage shot across Italy and the Jordanian desert with excerpts from Antonioni’s films, creating an illusion of continuity between past and present. From a metaphoric desert (the industrial area of Ravenna, where film masterpiece “Red Desert” was shot in 1964) to a real one, the physical spaces explored by the camera become psychological landscapes, states of mind, atmospheres. As the camera lingers on the architecture of La Cupola—the futuristic house in Sardinia designed by avant-garde architect Dante Bini in the 1960s for Antonioni and Vitti, then real-life partners—the line between reality and fiction starts to blur.
In collaboration with Archivio Michelangelo Antonioni.

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program 2023

Why Are You Image Plus?

Director Biography – Diogo Baldaia
Diogo Baldaia was born in Porto and grew up in the city of Maia. He studied at the Escola Superior de Teatro e Cinema (ESTC/Lisbon) where he graduated in Film Directing and Cinematography. He took a master’s degree in Visual Arts at KASK Conservatorium (Ghent, Belgium). He worked and lived in Brussels before returning to Portugal, where he is currently based in Lisbon. His films have been awarded and shown at national and international film festivals, such as the Rotterdam International Film Festival, Vienna Shorts, Oberhausen, IndieLisboa, etc.
SYNOPSIS
Ima is a little girl who passed away too soon. Desperate to talk to her grandmother, she decides to possess a young boy. But an old spirit is interfering with her plans.
At a conceptual level, “Waking Field” represents an ongoing exploration in observation, meditation, and artistic research. Why do we stare and slowly decompress at the sight of light on water, a distant flock of birds or an empty bag hovering in an alley ? There is an apparent gray area of experience where cadence, familiarity and abstraction are in balance and serve to connect us in an elemental and unified manner. Ive sought to expand on these moments of “betweenness” and shift them towards the primary.

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program 2023

Waking Field

Director Biography – Brian Alexander
Brian Alexander is a transdisciplinary Artist who’s works are specifically focused on the unseen, unheard, and under served life forms among us. His practice involves the development of one off tools, processes, and programs in order to realize the space beyond our collective limitations in perceptual bandwidth. Believing the adage “a fish cannot tell you about water”, Alexander’s works point towards the gaps between human intent and understanding by bridging the Earth’s deeper signatures and reconnecting us all in a grounded and immersive experience.
His 34 year professional career spans public and commercial Art endeavors including Sculpture, Installations, Sound and Performance, as well as product and technical process development. He currently holds 28 patents with permanent works in MOMA NY, Cooper Hewitt, and Smithsonian.
In 2011 He established Trace Bloom as a blanket field of exploration and artistic research for all forms of media in an immersive, and fully inclusive approach. Distilled as definition, Trace Bloom is; to loosely outline perceived phenomena, to develop the tools and conditions for emergent expression, and to allow that expression to grow unencumbered to a point of perceived resolution or shared understanding.
SYNOPSIS
Waking Field is an optically based experimental film shot in realtime without computer generated effects or post processing. The only physical subject is light and water. I have developed open lens systems which operates in complete darkness in a 20’ x 30’ room. The actual lenses have no body and are a combination of glass and melting ice which degrade over time such that no two takes are exactly the same nor are they repeatable. The art of the process has become in creating the conditions which manifest the effect since it is largely uncontrollable, it is a practice of allowing and openness. The audio is created primarily in realtime with as few post tweaks as possible. It is hoped that this sense of the immersive, rooted in physical reality can serve to ground us and help reset media stereotypes.
At a conceptual level, “Waking Field” represents an ongoing exploration in observation, meditation, and artistic research. Why do we stare and slowly decompress at the sight of light on water, a distant flock of birds or an empty bag hovering in an alley ? There is an apparent gray area of experience where cadence, familiarity and abstraction are in balance and serve to connect us in an elemental and unified manner. Ive sought to expand on these moments of “betweenness” and shift them towards the primary.

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program 2023

Underground Ants

Director Biography – Leevi Pienihäkkinen, Kristiina Kekomäki, Oskari Koponen
Leevi Pienihäkkinen is a film student from Finland. Leevi is studying Film and Television at Metropolia University of Applied Sciences. Leevi specializes in cinematography but is also interested in directing and editing. He also has experience working on fictional short films as a lighting technician and editor. Leevi has also studied journalism and he has a previous qualification as an electrician.
Kristiina Kekomäki is an easily enthusiastic and diligent aspiring screenwriter. She is studying at Metropolia University of Applied Sciences to become a screenwriter and is interested in societal issues and politics.
Oskari Koponen is by nature thoughtful and easily enthusiastic budding cinematographer . He is studying cinematography at Metropolia University of Applied Sciences and is interested in filmmaking and storytelling.
SYNOPSIS
Have you ever wondered what happens inside an anthill?
The ants’ industrious and disciplined life also includes a surprising way to relax. Deep within the depths of the ant society, its members thoroughly enjoy the life of an ant. Demanding tasks require fittingly substantial amusements.

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program 2023

TOXX

Director – Luna Mrozik Gawler
SYNOPSIS
TOXX wonders what the body becomes in world and epoch united in contamination. As studies identify microplastics in clouds, air pollution particles in placentas, and PFAS ‘forever’ chemicals in 90% of tested breast milk, TOXX meditates on microbial migrations and the choreographies of change, exploring a planetary inheritance of industrial residue. Traversing territories of toxicity, and queer(y)ing the eco-monstrous figure, this work reckons with the grotesque figurations of ecological presents and the uncanny futures that might evolve from it. The porous progeny of the Toxicocene find themselves united in contamination across every cell, site, and species. Resisting the urge to withdraw from the disquiet of such intimate incursions, eco-monstrous figures invite us to turn towards the chimeric forms haunting contemporary myths of ecologic purity or return. TOXX lingers in the disquiet of post-normal narratives, refusing the convenience of utopic/dystopic binaries, to instead it favour the morphic muck of transition without the expectation of arrival. The Toxicocene offers no apocalypse, no salvific future, only the motley miasma of bodies seeping, blooming, metabolising and mutating in transition, unceasing. A toxomythology without end.

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program 2023

They’re all dead

Director Biography – Marisa Benito Crespo
Marisa Benito Crespo (Barcelona, 1974) has a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts and a Master’s Research Degree in Art, Music and Aesthetic Education. She lives and works in Córdoba, where she teaches Audiovisual Media at the Mateo Inurria School of Art. Her research work focuses on staged or constructed photography from the perspective of female creation. She combines her professional activity with audiovisual creation and photography. The aesthetics of her work are generated through images shaped by sensory experience, the imaginary and the memory, and photographic and cinematographic language.
With her short film Dúctiles (2018), Marisa won the Video Art Award at FEM TOUR TRUCK 2018 – International Feminist Video Art Festival. This work was also the winning short film of CORTOS EN FEMENINO 2019. She was a finalist in the IV International Competition DONA’M CINE 2019. She has been selected for the programme of women’s short films by the INSTITUTO CERVANTES, presented in 21 cities where this institution has headquarters. She has participated in the official selections of various festivals, including: 6th VAFA International Video Art Festival (Macau, China), CYFEST 12 Digital Video Art Program (Saint Petersburg, New York), FIVAC 8th Camagüey Video Art Festival (Cuba), FIVA 08 International Video Art Festival (Buenos Aires), IBRIDA Festival (Forlí, Italy), LAN Audiovisual Festival Obrero (Bilbao), and IVAHM 2019 International Video Art Festival (Madrid). In 2021 she presented at PHOTOALICANTE International Photography Festival.
Her work Artificio (2016) obtained a mention at the 1st FESTIVAL INTERNATIONAL DE CORPORALIDAD EXPANDIDA in Buenos Aires. She has taken part in the official selections of various festivals around the world, including: Feminist video art festival FEM TOUR TRUCK (which toured though Latin America and Spain), 6 UNDER THE SUBWAY VIDEO ART NIGHT (New York, Madrid, Berlin, Buenos Aires and Valencia), BIDEODROMO 2016 International Film and Experimental Video Festival (Bilbao), MA/IN 2016 – MAtera INtermedia Festival – a digital art festival (Matera, Italy), III CONCURSO INTERNACIONAL DONA’MCINE 2016 (Spain), IVAHM 2017 Festival Internacional de Videoarte (Madrid), and IBERODOCS Ibero-American Documentary Film Festival (Edinburgh and Glasgow).
In 2009, she co-directed La Cita, which was placed as a finalist in the video-creation section of the 13th edition of the FESTIVAL DE MÁLAGA.
SYNOPSIS
In this post-photographic context of the digital age, we relate to images in a different way; they have other meanings, and they have been dematerialised. They have become elements without a body, ephemeral and superabundant. The transition from an analogue to a digital process has become a paradigm shift.
Family photographs used to be a treasure, passed down from generation to generation, which we could look at and touch to evoke the memory of a moment, or of a loved one. We have a memory fragmented between the photographic paper and the screens. It is easy to find a photo in our albums, but not so easy among hundreds of files and folders. If we do not look at them, these photos cease to exist.
What will the memories of this digital generation be like? People will no longer have a box in which to store the photographs of their lives, of their history.

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program 2023

STRATIS

Director Biography – Antonis Maros
Antonis Maros is a visual artist and film maker based between London and Athens, Greece. He is a graduate of the Royal College of Art, the Athens School of Fine Arts, the Department of Communication, Media and Culture of Panteion University and the Veaki Drama School in Athens. He works with performance art and moving image to explore issues around identity, confinement, and exclusion as social and cultural constructs. His work has been exhibited in the UK, Sweden, France, and Greece.
SYNOPSIS
On the most isolated island of the Aegean Sea, a man faces a series of paradoxical challenges to reach his final destination.

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program 2023

Still Life with Woman, Tea and Letter

Director Biography – Tess Martin
Tess Martin is a filmmaker/visual artist based in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Her work is informed by hand-made animation techniques and their potential to explore the human condition. Persistent themes are our place in nature, our relationship to the past, and how memory and perception inform identity. She creates short films, interactive installations and paintings/prints.
Filmography: Still Life with Woman, Tea and Letter (2022), Orbit (2019), Ginevra (2017), The Lost Mariner (2014), Mario (2014), They Look Right Through You (2013), Hula Hoop (2012), The Whale Story (2012)
SYNOPSIS
A photograph is a window into the past, but sometimes the border between the past and the present is not entirely clear. This stop-motion animation invites us to think about our relationship to time by portraying one woman caught in the middle.

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program 2023

So many times

Director Biography – Nina Sorić
Nina Sorić was born in Ljubljana in 2003. After completing her high school education at the grammar school in Opatija, in 2021, she enrols in the Cultural Studies program at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences of The University of Rijeka. She has a great passion for the visual arts, including films, graphic novels and performative art. However, her specific field of interest is film editing and its unique blend of the visual and the auditory. 
Her film knowledge and experience in editing can be attributed to her participation in film festivals and professional workshops, while travelling throughout Croatia, Denmark and Norway. She is open to working on audio-visual shootings as well as editing commercial, documentary, art and video works. During her time at the Filmaktiv’s workshop Nova škola dokumentarnog filma (The New Documentary Filmmaking school) (2021/2022), she writes, directs, shoots and edits two short auteur films ‘That Much More’ and ‘Trail of memory’. Her latest film project ‘So many times’ (2023), premiered as a part of the closing ceremony for Student Cultural Centre (SKC) 10th anniversary.
SYNOPSIS
The film ‘So many times’ follows the author’s mother in the process of moulding a clay portrait of the daughter. Through the use of the medium of film, the portrait becomes a self-portrait. 

The portrayal of the dynamics from a “static” place is indicative of a creative process in which the reciprocal self-doubt is vulnerable to the eyes of the audience: the mother’s uncertainty about creating a faithful portrait in a short amount of time and the author’s struggles in making the film as authentic as possible. The self-doubt and uneasiness of the creative process are realised in the uncertainty of the film’s ending.



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program 2023

SKYSCRAPER FILM

Director Biography – Federica Foglia
Federica Foglia is a transnational visual artist and writer. She holds a BA in Multimedia Languages and Digital Humanities: History of Art, Theatre, and Cinema from the University of Naples L’Orientale, an MFA in Film from York University, Toronto and is currently a Ph.D. student in Cinema and Media Studies at York University.
She is interested in migration, citizenship and identity, displacement, women of the diaspora, migrant temporalities, and finding a visual language to investigate these experiences. Her practice revolves around tactile filmmaking, recycled cinema, amateur filmmaking, archives, ecofeminism, and materialist cinema. She works within the domestic space to remediate found-footage movies, via a sculptural approach she intervenes directly on the celluloid body. Her work engages with the physical qualities of the film medium and the politics of fragmented aesthetics. She is currently working on a project that involves eco-friendly emulsion lifting techniques to remediate 16mm archival films and developing eco-sustainable photographic processes with algae-based materials.
Her works have been exhibited and won awards in several art spaces and festivals, including Macau Art Garden, Images Festival, Alchemy Film & Moving Image Festival, Anthology Film Archives, Ann Arbor Film Festival, International Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Alicante MACA, BIDEODROMO, BilbaoArte Foundation, Toronto International Film Festival, Antimatter [Media Art], Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, Crossroads San Francisco, REAKTOR Wien, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, Visions in the Nunnery – Whitechapel UK, Groupe Intervention Vidéo Montreal, SCAD Savannah International Film Festival, ULTRAcinema Festival Mexico, MIMESIS Documentary Festival, Camerimage.
Her research has been supported by the Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and received an MFA nomination from the Graduate Program in Cinema and Media Studies (York University) for the Governor General’s Gold Medal. She is also the recipient of the 2017 RBC Arts Access Fund Award for Newcomer Artists in Canada.
SYNOPSIS
Can I use the film strip structure as an architectural element?
Is it possible to use the celluloid from the film as a cement?
Can these skyscrapers be turned into something else?
Can solid lines blend into sensual, natural curves?
Can I melt skyscrapers?
Skyscraper Film was created to try to give a visual answer to these questions, arising from the artist’s relation to urban maps of various locations and their respective skylines, populated by imposing skyscrapers and reinforced concrete panoramas: Quebec, Kingston (Canada), Maryland, Pittsburgh, Baltimore (USA) etc.
Cities are presented to us as an abstract handmade camera-less collage, created from scraps of orphan 16mm films from the 1980s. Originally produced to promote tourism in North America, these films are reassigned to a new context through the Emulsion Lifting/Emulsion Grafting technique that the director has been pursuing for years. In addition to tourism films and informational films, Skyscraper Film also uses rare family films and home-movies dating back to 1929 and 1954 in 16mm format.
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More on the Emulsion Lifting technique: https://knightscholar.geneseo.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1001&context=library-research